Qualified senior citizens will be eligible for a property tax exemption under the new Senior Tax exemption program announced this week by Mayor Brian Arrigo.
Voters overwhelmingly approved the exemption program in the November 2017 municipal election, voting 4,543 to 1,398 in favor. Mayor Arrigo championed the exemption in the run-up to the election, citing the dilemma faced by seniors on a fixed income burdened by the rising costs of groceries, medical care, heating bills and real estate taxes. “A program like this can provide a measure of assistance,” he said at the time.
The exemption amount, to be determined in December, will equal ten percent of the of the average assessed value of all properties for fiscal year 2019. Using the FY 2018 residential property tax base as an example, the exemption amount is projected to be in the vicinity of $480.00.
Resident property owners who are age 65 as of July 1, 2018 have until April 1, 2019 to apply for the exemption. Applicants will be required to document that they meet strict residential and financial criteria to be approved for the exemption.
To qualify, an applicant must have owned the property in Revere on July 1, 2018, used it as a principle domicile on that date, and have owned that property as a principle domicile for at least five years prior. Applicants may also have owned another property in Massachusetts as a principle domicile for the previous five years. Applicants whose income exceeded $57,000 in calendar year 2017 are not eligible.
Applications for the Senior Tax Exemption program can be obtained at City Hall in the Mayor’s and the Assessors’ office, or can be downloaded from the City’s website www.revere.org.
The Mayor’s office will conduct application training workshops on Thursday, July 12 and Thursday, July 19 at 11 a.m. at the Senior Center, 25 Winthrop Avenue. Applications may be obtained at the workshops, as well.
Mayor Arrigo is optimistic that the Senior exemption program will serve as a pilot program for an eventual city-wide owner-resident exemption. “This will allow us to implement an eligibility verification system and consider any unforeseen issues.”